Leadership & Board of Directors

Sussex School is a parent cooperative under the leadership of Interim Head of School, Joellen Shannon. Joellen works with faculty and staff to successfully operate the approximately 120-person school. 


Hailing from Philadelphia, Joellen earned her undergraduate degree in economics from University of Notre Dame. She went on to obtain a Masters in Environmental Studies from the University of Montana. 


She has dedicated her entire career to social and environmental-impact work. In addition to education, her career has spanned work in affordable housing and community agriculture. 


Joellen began working for Sussex in 2013 as the Development and Marketing Director, bringing two decades of nonprofit capacity-building experience to the role. In 2017, she – together with Daphne Braun – became the co-director of the school. In 2021 she moved into the role of Interim Head of School.


Joellen believes education is one of the most powerful ways to improve people's lives and to influence society, the future, and the planet. She chose to send her own two children to Sussex and has witnessed, first hand, the power of a Sussex Education.


In her role as interim Head of School, she is committed to honoring the voices of our teachers, students, and parents in decision making, to make health and safety a priority for our students, and to celebrate the mission and values of Sussex School in its 50th year.


The Board of Directors are elected by Sussex parents and set general policies, oversee committees, and work alongside the head of school to improve the Sussex experience. The board is made up of current parents, the founder, a community liaison, an alumni member, and two teacher and student representatives. When making decisions, the Sussex Board takes parent and student viewpoints into account. It is the administrative team's responsibility to work with the community to implement new strategies and ensure understanding.


As a whole, Sussex School's leadership is focused on looking towards the future and making decisions in the best interest of the students.


Board of Directors

Ange Anderson: President

Nick Kujawa: Vice President

Tracy McDonald: Treasurer

George Laufenberg: Secretary

Katie James: Member-at-Large

Ali Kelly: Member-At-Large

Stephanie Lathrop: Member-At-Large

Emily McMeekin: Member-At-Large

Charity O'Connor Member-At-Large

Matt Semanoff: Member-At-Large

Ben Jimenez: Alumni Liaison

Bente Winston: Founder of Sussex School

Kris LaRoche: Teacher Representative

Matt Zunker: Teacher Representative

Ryden Eichwald: Student Representative

Ellette Whitcomb: Student Representative


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